December 20, 2013

12 days of writers encore - 2013

Blogger's Note: Welcome to the 12 Days of Writing, Change the Word's annual December celebration. After two years of sharing writing tips, this year, I'm sharing 12 writers with you. For the first three weeks of December, you'll have a chance to meet 12 wonderful women and learn about their favorite holiday traditions.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the 12 Days of Writers -- both the writers and you readers. I had a blast getting to know everyone involved a little better by learning about their holiday traditions and pastimes. I'm fortunate to have such a wonderful group of writer friends, and it was a pleasure to introduce you to a few of them. As we wind down the season, I wanted to share an encore of sorts by listing and linking each of the authors in case you missed a couple of days.

That's a pretty awesome bunch of ladies, don't you think? It's hard not to feel fortunate when you're surrounded by wonderful people.

Now, because a few people have asked if I'd be sharing my answers to the questions I put to them, I figured I might as well. Here you go:

What’s your favorite holiday tradition?
As much as I love putting up the Christmas tree, my favorite tradition happens during church on Christmas Eve. I love the part of the service when the lights go out and everyone lights a candle from the Christ candle while singing "Silent Night." Every year it gives me tingles to see and hear how beautiful the church becomes while everyone joins together in this one celebration of Christmas. I'm a fairly high-strung person, but during "Silent Night" I'm able to forget everything and live in the moment.

What is a must-have eat or treat this time of year?
It's not Christmas until I have a cup of eggnog. When I was younger I'd usually have a few glasses of it during the season, but lately I limit it to one or two on Christmas Eve or Day. My dad also gets eggnog-flavored saltwater taffy, and I love that. This year, we're planning on trying out eggnog pancakes for Christmas brunch, and I'm pretty excited.

What is the best gift you’ve ever received?
My family has always been excellent at gift giving, which means I've made out like a bandit most Christmases. But the gift that most excited me on a Christmas morning was this Cabbage Patch doll.

The picture of Little Laura says it all. I was beyond thrilled. I'd asked for a Cabbage Patch doll for months, and finding it under the tree was, like, the best thing ever. I mean, it came with an adoption certificate you had to sign and everything. That's a pretty big commitment when you're in elementary school. I'm pretty sure she was named "Anita" when I adopted her, but I changed her name throughout the years to fit whatever game we were playing. I still have this doll, and a couple of sentimental stuffed animals from my childhood, because she was such a huge part of my childhood.

I've recently learned that this present represents the one and only time my parents woke up super early on a Black Friday to make sure they snagged our most coveted gifts. Mom says she spent all of five minutes in line, picked up a doll each for my sister and I, and was back home before any of us knew she'd gone. Well played, Mrs. Claus.

What is your favorite holiday read and watch?
Aside from holiday classics like "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," one of my favorite holiday reads is "The MacGregor Brides" by Nora Roberts. Though it's considered an anytime of year sort of book, I love that all three love stories are told over the backdrop of Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year's Eve.

Perhaps that's why my two favorite holiday movies are "Love Actually" and "When Harry Met Sally." Both can stand alone any time of year, but there's something magical about the holiday season.

I'm also a huge fan of holiday comedies like "A Christmas Story" and sentimental like "It's a Wonderful Life." I'll also give most movies on ABC Family or the Hallmark channel a shot. Same goes for romance novels and chick lit stories with a Christmas theme. That's one reason it was such a great opportunity to be part of Merry & Bright this year.

What’s one New Year’s resolution you’re making for 2014?
I'm great at making New Year's resolutions, but I'm not as good at keeping them. Like every other year, I'll probably resolve to eat healthier foods that I make at home, do more cardio and try to get my money right once and for all. Unlike previous years, I won't have to make the resolution to publish my first novel, because I managed to do that this year. Instead, I'd like to get one or two more novels published in 2014. Wish me luck!

About the Author
Laura Chapman found a way to mix her love of romance and humor as a women’s fiction blogger and author. A 2008 graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Laura studied journalism, English and history. She spent four years traveling the country as a writer/photographer, and currently works in communications. Born and raised in Nebraska – in a city, not on a farm – she is a devoted fan of football, British period drama, writing in bars and her cats, Jane and Bingley. Hard Hats and Doormats is her debut novel.

Connect with Laura

Buy Her Books
Hard Hats and Doormats
Barnes & Noble
Marching Ink

Merry & Bright
Barnes & Noble

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  1. Cute pic of Little Laura! Fun to get to know more about you! Thanks for hosting this series! It's been fun. Off to read the last couple that I missed!

    1. Thank you! I really had fun reading all of these. It definitely put me in the holiday spirit.

  2. I adore Little Laura! (And her grown self!) Thanks for sharing about you and Christmas, and for doing this series. It was so fun being a part of it! All the best to you in 2014, Laura! You deserve all good things! xoxo

    1. So many best wishes for you in 2014, too. Thank you for your friendship and support.

  3. Aw, Little Laura got a Cabbage Patch doll! Adult Tracie got one straight from the Cabbage Patch Hospital here in Georgia! ;) I think she's still stuffed in a closet somewhere in my house. Her name was Cheryl Emma. How funny that your doll was blonde and named Anita! Hee!

    I didn't even realize that Nora Roberts had released a holiday-themed book! I'll have to check that out!

    Eggnog pancakes? That should be interesting! ;) Eggnog is one of those things that I'm not quite sure what its ingredients are; it's mysterious like that.

    Thanks so much for hosting this fab series and for inviting me to be a part of it, Laura. It has been so much fun and reading the posts has been a welcome break from all the stressful holiday prep.

    Have a very Merry Christmas! Hope Santa brings you something as good as that Cabbage Patch doll. ;)

    1. You went to the Cabbage Patch Hospital?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!? Jealousy!!!!

      Nora actually has a couple of holiday shorts, too. I used to buy whatever holiday anthologies I could get my hands on when I was traveling all the time, because it kept me in the spirit even though I was away from home so much.

      I'll let you know how the pancakes turn out.

      Thank you for everything you've done for me in 2013. You've been an amazing friend, and I'm constantly amazed by you.

  4. That Cabbage Patch doll box is almost bigger than Little Laura! So adorable!! :)
    Thank you so much for including me in this collection of wonderful ladies. I had so much fun reading everyone's post. Merry Christmas to you and your family!! Wishing you all the best for 2014: health, happiness and more books!! xo
    P.S. Let us know how those eggnog pancakes turn out!